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small farms that i would want to work with directly. however, my time is really challenged most of the time, so he takes a load off my shoulder by--he's almost a one-stop shop, and so, i can place my order with him, and i know that i'm getting the best of what is local, fresh, and organic, if i specify. >> mills admits that following the produce directly from the farm to the fork is a great way to make a living, but he admits that this job, like any others, has its occasional frustrations. >> yes, we do still have some chefs asking us for heirloom tomatoes in march, and that's not going to happen. [laughs] >> but, he says, the vast majority are eager to try the variety of vegetables grown in the golden state. so produce express, which has about 3-400 produce items in its warehouse daily, will probably keep delivering them for a long time, making jim mills one happy produce man. in sacramento, charlotte fadipe, "california country tv."
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>> this segment is brought to you by the california farm bureau federation.
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>> welcome back to "california
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country." >> from san diego to watsonville and dozens of places in between, the golden state is the undisputed king of this little berry that packs a huge combination of having great taste, beauty, and nutrition. did you know that california is the only state to produce strawberries all year round? which is exactly why farmers are coming up with brand-new ideas on how to use one of our favorite fruits. drive past the strawberry fields in santa maria this time of the year, and you'll be treated to the fragrance and color of fruit fit for a king. a naturally cool climate mixed with the balmy pacific winds insulate this area from getting too hot or too cold, making california one of the absolute best places in the entire world to grow
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strawberries--not that you have to tell daren gee that. >> how much do you need? what do you need, a box or two boxes? >> i'm just going to get a flat, at least, a flat, so. >> a flat? >> $5,000. but for you-- [laughs] >> we'll reduce the price. >> a good deal, huh? [laughs] >> daren is founder of daren's berries, aka db specialty farms, where they grow 4 varieties of strawberries across more than 700 acres, making daren one of the largest individual growers of strawberries in california. all is a far cry from where his farm started out--as a small class project. >> and it was so exciting to actually grow something and to see success, and in those days, we had 6 acres. all of us kids would get 6 acres to grow our cotton projects. well, you know, now it became a competitive thing. and so, i just fell in love with the idea of farming
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a plant and harvesting it and seeing the fruits of your labor. >> today, the fruits of his labor are as much about the people working with him as the food he grows. that's because he is surrounded by family these days--not only his 2 brothers, who have returned to the farm, but also the community of workers he has by his side on a daily basis. >> well, people are everything. ok. if you have the best people, then chances are, you're going to have the best farm. it's not just--it's not, yot know, just the idea of growing strawberries. you have to have people that will help you execute your--you could say it-- you'd call it your dream. you could call it your vision. >> on a farm, it's a close-knit thing. you can't be everywhere every minute. so you're depending on other people to pay attention to the farming. >> daren definitely has a passion for farming. he was in ag his whole life. we knew it since we were little kids that
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he was--he would tear the back yard up and replant, and we would do this constantly. he just loved, loved plants. >> in the berry business since 1990, daren has seen the industry in california grow les and bounds over the years. believe it or not, it's now a billion dollar business in the state. but not all strawberries are created equal. there are actually more than 600 varieties, but only a handful are grown commercially in california, one of the most popular being the albion variety that daren worked closely with uc-davis to develop. >> it has several advantages over other varieties. first of all, the production is high. i mean, this thing will produce anywhere from 6,500 to 8,000 trays a year, ok? the second thing that it does, it has that beautiful red color, probably one of the prettiest berries that you can buy on the market. it also has shipping ability. so
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what it does is it allows us to ship it full color. now, that has been something that has eluded us for years. >> once the berries are picked, they are then rushed into the cooling facility where huge fans draw out field heat. once cooled, they are then trucked off for same-day delivery to a variety of places, including one of northern california's most famous berry businesses, shari's berries. started in 1989, this is the place where strawberries go on a unique adventure. here, they are drizzled, dipped, dunked, and no doubt devoured by those lucky enough to receive one. >> you talk about how a company succeeds. it's got to have a product with some distinction and some appeal. and everybody loves chocolate-covered strawberries, and we do the best. we're the best at it. we're the largest in the country in making this product. we have the best mechanisms for packaging. we have the best reliability for certainty of delivery on the requested date.
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>> part of that reliability rests with the dozen or so growers throughout the state that the company works with on a continual basis. each flat that comes in is checked for sweetness, size, and quality. in fact, their standard has been dubbed in the industry as the shari pick, because in a business where freshness reigns, there is simply no room for error. >> so we have very particular standards that we go through. sometimes, the fields, when the crop is good, will actually have them pick a berry to our exact specifications, our minimum sizes. so we don't jupt take any berry. it has to be of a certain quality, a certain size. >> the relationship with growers is premiere. in fact, we--when we get a relationship started, we like to show them what our final product looks like. in fact, we like to send them boxes of shari's berries now and then in thanks for their efforts and also so they see what the final product looks like. >> the company estimates they did up to 2 million
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strawberries, used 60 tons of chocolate, and shipped to more than 200,000 homes every year. >> everybody remembers and can tell you the story about the day they first received shari's berries. and that's how we came up with the moniker, the unforgettable gift. >> from berries covered in ooey, gooey chocolate and showered with nuts, to berries dressed up in chocolate-covered tuxedoes, to good old fashioned ripe berries ready toe enjoyed straight out of the field, california growers can take great pride in growing one of america's favorite fruits. for "california country," i'm tracy sellers. >> hi. i'm chef paul murphy. and today, we're going to make an absoutely fabulous strawberry salad with bleu cheese from point reyes. i have some romaine lettuce, some strawberries, some carrots. and we're going to finish it off with a balsamic glaze. these are the simple steps you're going to take to enjoy this wonderful strawberry salad. some romaine lettuce, we're going to cut it as strips. next, we're going to slice up some of the strawberries. we're going to
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place these ingredients in a bowl, add some of the carrots, and last but not least, that delicious point reyes bleu cheese. we're going to put, oh, a nice amount. we'll chop it up. so we'll tosthis. we'll add some of the balsamic glaze. what it is, it's pomegranate syrup, and i reduce it, and i add balsamic vinegar to it. so it's a wonderful, wonderful alternative to something else. this dish can be enjoyed as a first course, or i would serve it as a dessert with a nice port, or maybe a big cab, and you finish off a lovely evening at home. so there's all the ingredients. chef paul murphy's strawberry salad with bleu cheese, carrots, and romaine lettuce. this strawberry salad is a crowd pleaser at home, or you could come to humphrey's and have us make it
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for you.
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>> welcome back to "california country." >> steve mcshane here, mcshane's nursery and landscape supply, here to introduce you to the wonderful world of container gardening. look at this wine barrel planter--fabulous way to get your own veggies into
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the kitchen. some mizuna, some red mustard. there's even some chard in here. i see chives, onions, and notice the flowers. beautiful. easier to produce and put together than you could imagine. first, start with the stuff that you like to put in your dishes. if you use a lot of parsley, put it in there. maybe broccoli, cauliflower? in my case, i'm a huge fan of fresh beets. i love beets. i also love arugula. there's nothing like an arugula salad. and heck, it works in soups and on pizzas. and i also use a lot of chives. so that's what's going to go into my garden. first steps with this wine barrel here include a little bit of gravel in the bottom, one to 2 inches. a high quality potting soil, too. be sure to read the label. you want things like kelp meal, feather meal, bat guano. this is good stuff for inside your garden. once it's in there, you're ready to rock and roll. you get planting by mixing in a diversity of plants. break up the roots a little bit. plant to the same depth as where the
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plant may have been inside the 6-pack. get a few of those guys in there. make it look pretty. it doesn't have to be perfect, because this is your home farm. some flowers. it's already looking wonderful. we don't want to forget some fertilizer, too. throw a couple of sachets in there or, perhaps, some organic fertilizer, or some conventional fertilizer. the plant does not know the difference. by peppering a little bit in, as we get going, we're going to give these plants a real head start. and before we know it, we're going to have ourselves a cornucopia of vegetables and flowers. getting something like this in your yard is easier than you think. let's get gardening. >> that concludes today's tour of the best of "@alifornia country." join us next time for more undiscovered treasures from the most fascinating state in the country. [captioning made possible by california farm bureau federation] [captioned by the national
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captioning institute] there is really, only one boy... one girl... one tree...
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one forest... one deep, dancing ocean... one mountain calling... one handful of sand through our fingers... one endless sky overhead... and one simple way to care for it all. please visit and learn how the world's leading environmental groups are working together under one name. earth share. one environment...
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September 6, 2010 5:00pm-5:30pm PST

TOPIC FREQUENCY Shari 3, Us 3, Paul Murphy 2, Balsamic Glaze 2, San Diego 1, Reyes 1, Steve Mcshane 1, Mcshane 1, Aka Db 1, Sacramento 1, Onions 1, Parsley 1, Mizuna 1, America 1, Charlotte Fadipe 1, California 1, Watsonville 1, Berry 1
Network SFGTV2
Duration 00:30:00
Scanned in San Francisco, CA, USA
Source Comcast Cable
Tuner Channel 89 (615 MHz)
Video Codec mpeg2video
Audio Cocec ac3
Pixel width 544
Pixel height 480
Sponsor Internet Archive
Audio/Visual sound, color